News story

National Archives release records from 1981

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Government records from 1981 have been made available online for the first time by The National Archives (TNA).

Highlights from the collection include records of:

  • civil disorder after disturbances in Brixton, Bristol, Liverpool, Manchester, and London districts and the Prime Minister’s meetings with community leaders
  • Maze Prison - the IRA hunger strikers
  • splits in Cabinet over the government economic policy
  • defence cuts
  • relations with France
  • Thatcher’s relationship with Reagan
  • bombing of Iran by Israel.

Oliver Morley, Chief Executive and Keeper, TNA, said:

‘Every year, TNA releases the fascinating files from 30 years before and in their way, they are as much a part of government transparency as FOI.  These records from Thatcher’s early time in office will resonate strongly for historians and public alike.’

The National Archives is the UK Government’s official archive, containing more than a thousand years of history, and is an executive agency of Ministry of Justice.

Government records from 1981 made available online for the first time by The National Archives (TNA).